On Sunday afternoon, a competitor in the Madden NFL 19 Championship Series tournament opened fire within the venue in Jacksonville, Florida during the event.
According to Sheriff Mike Williams of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s office, the shooter was identified as 24-year-old David Katz of Baltimore, Maryland. Katz was a competitor in the tournament who shot multiple people, ultimately ending his own life and the lives of two others. Of the total 13 victims counted for from the event, 11 suffered from gunshot wounds. Based on the sheriff’s reports, all surviving victims are currently stable and expected to make a full recovery. Twitch, who streamed the event and the incidents that occurred, has removed the clip.
Earlier today, police identified the deceased victims as 22-year-old Elijah “TruBoy” Clayton and 28-year-old Taylor “SpotMePlzz” Robertson. Reports indicate that David Katz opened fire after his elimination from the tournament and was specifically targeting fellow competitors. According to the Associated Press, Katz had a medical history of mental illness. Court records from Katz’s parent’s divorce indicate that said mental illness has hospitalized him twice as a teen.
Electronic Arts (EA) has released multiple statements on Twitter since the incident. The company has sent its “sympathies” to those effected and thanks the first-responders who aided at the time.
We here at Culture of Gaming send our prayers and best wishes to the victims and their families. It saddens us to see and hear such violence at an event that should celebrate the love of a game. Hopefully, us gamers can come together as a community to support those who need it most now.